VIDEO GUY thinks maybe it’s “National Small Film Week.”
I just received a recommendation from a trusted dear friend: WILDFLOWER, available on Hulu. This is a touching, at times very humorous, film that has its protagonist, Bea (an excellent Kiernan Shipka) in a coma, reflecting on the events of her life from birth to high school graduation. Her parents, Derek and Sharon (played by Samantha Hyde and Dash Nihok) are both intellectually disabled (and neurodivergent in real life) and over time, Bea has assumed great responsibility for tending to their needs, although they are essentially self-sufficient.
This has left Bea largely in denial of her own needs and a bit snarky as a result, which is the source of the film’s levity. A female high school friend, Nia (Kannon Omachi) and Bea’s boyfriend Ethan (Charlie Plummer) are sources of grounding for Bea, and it’s her interactions with them that help her grow in some necessary ways.
The film is billed as a coming-of-age story “inspired by true events,” seemingly confirmed during the end credits. There are plenty of weak entries in this category so it’s refreshing to find one that’s worth the time. If you want action/adventure, go elsewhere; if you want a pleasant story and some realistic alt-family dramedy, give this a try. To me, it was vaguely reminiscent of Clare Danes’ My So-Called Life.